Last summer, the Clayton animal shelter closed amid an outcry of concern among residents who believed the shelter wasn’t being well run. Regardless of where you fall on that issue, one thing’s certain. The town has saved a nice bit of pocket change by sending the stray animals it collects to the Johnston County animal shelter.
The town had been paying some of the Clayton shelter’s operating costs and had expected to pay something to hold the animals elsewhere.
But Johnston County animal control officials say they don’t charge towns for the strays those towns deliver to the shelter. Johnston County Animal Control director Ernie Wilkerson admits it would be nice if the shelter did charge something for those services.
We agree. The county provides a service to house, care for, adopt and, yes, euthanize, these unwanted animals.
Any pet owner knows those acts cost money. The county animal control office should be able to charge a nominal fee for those services. And other government entities should be willing to pay a fee for that kind of service because it certainly takes a headache away from the towns that benefit.
In the first six months of this fiscal year, Clayton has carted about 200 animals to the shelter. Additional revenue from the towns who bring those animals would allow the county agency to improve its service, do more outreach in an effort to adopt more animals out to welcoming homes and reduce its own costs for euthanasia.
That seeems like a logical way to go. And, as long as those fees are reasonable, town officials shouldn’t have too many headaches helping subsidize the operation.